I can’t believe it’s been over 3 months since I last posted. But I have certainly been busy, and I needed a break from blogging. Between moving, the kids starting up with their school programs, and Husband returning from a four-month stint in Seattle, there was much to contend with.
After I wrote my last post, I began packing for the move out of the old mobile home. It was a gruelling 4 days of work, aided only by my 80 year old mother (who put me to shame with her hard work). I had somehow been under the impression that since I was planning on getting rid of a ton of stuff, the packing would be relatively easy. How wrong I was. For four days we started early and finished late into the evening. It was stressful, and we were both very sore. Our stuff went into a small container that had been brought to the property, and the kids and I moved to my mother’s home for what we thought would be a few short days.
Then it turned out that we were missing paperwork for the demolition. The specialized container service that is licensed to remove and dispose of construction waste required some form that nobody else had heard of, and it took me a few days just to track down someone who knew what it was and how to get it. That delay meant we missed the window for the excavator who was set to demolish the mobile. We ended up having to wait a few more days before we found someone who could come.
The demolition itself was fun, cathartic, and oh so satisfying! That horrible little hovel, which was literally falling apart before our eyes over the last few weeks of its life, was finally smashed to pieces and hauled away. The excavator driver let me have the first smash! Then my son was allowed to have a turn. That was fun. The rest took only another day or so, and before we knew it, it was all gone.
The change in the look of the property was significant. The mobile was situated near the driveway entrance to the road, and blocked the view of the rest of the property (not to mention the new house). With it gone, the place looks a lot larger. Now all we need to do is tear down the ugly pump house (in front of the new house, next to the tree) – but that’s a project for another time.
After 3 weeks of living at my mother’s house, bless her heart but in the end we were all wanting it to end, we finally got the go-ahead to move into our new house. First, I went to Seattle to visit Husband and escort him back home, then the whole family spent our first night there. It was Saturday, October 15, 2016. We all slept on a mattress on the floor in the master bedroom, as our bed had not arrived, nor had a huge Ikea shipment that would bring the kids’ beds and mattresses, as well as other miscellaneous items. Over the next few days we slowly settled in, but the chaos was far from over. As just one example, Ikea sent the wrong boxes for our dining table – we got an extra set of legs but only one half of the tabletop. It took 3 weeks for them to ship us another. Meanwhile, the place was still an active construction site…
After a relatively painless build process thus far, the last two months were insane. The industry in our area suddenly shifted into high gear and tradesmen were getting so booked up it was impossible to nail anybody down. All we heard was talk of guys having to turn away work for the first time in years, which was good for them but not so good for us. With things off schedule we’d lose our place and then have to scramble get people back again. We were lucky that our builder is so well-liked by the local contractors – many of them came just as a favour to him. One couple we knew had their whole project stuck on hold for two months waiting for crew to become available.
There were other delays, too. From the cabinet guy who had a mental health crises in the middle of installing our kitchen cabinets, to the siding and deck that took forever to finish, there were days when it felt like we would never enjoy peace and quiet. Everything had been on schedule to complete by the end of October, but it was the end of November before we finally got our occupancy permit. It didn’t help that October was a crazy busy month for me – I’d made travel plans (for work and for fun) much earlier in the year assuming things would be done by now but it all happened at the same time. Even now, there are little things that need to be finished up – they call them “deficiencies” in the business, apparently – but we decided to take a break until after the Xmas holidays. We all needed it.
In my next post I will talk more about what it has been like moving into my dream home after almost 10 years of planning, waiting, and imagining what it would all be like. It’s not so much that I’m constantly in a state of bliss – I mean, nobody is like that. Instead, it’s a steady stream of little bursts of pleasure that I get when living and working in my home. From tidying up the kitchen, to doing laundry, to waking up in the morning to a gorgeous view, the sunshine streaming in through the south-facing windows over these winter days…it’s like a little dopamine machine has been implanted in my brain!